Coloring is a great way to relax and focus, but it can be hard to find the right pen.
Some pens bleed through the page or dry out quickly. Other pens don’t have enough ink for complex coloring pages. Still, other pens leave your hands stained with color after you’re done drawing.
We’ve made a list of the best pens for colouring. Use them in your favorite adult coloring books, on printed pages, your own drawn artwork, and more. The best coloring pens are the ones that make your art pop off the page with vivid color. These are our top pics for the best coloring pens and markers.
Glossary of terms for the types of pens for coloring:
- Fineliners – Very fine-tipped pens, usually 0.3-0.4mm. Used for very small spaces not for coloring large spaces on a page. Popular brands: Staedtler Triplus, Stabilo.
- Water-based pens- This type of ink does not bleed through most papers and is ideal for double-sided books (always check first as paper quality varies). The ink in water-based pens doesn’t blend as well and can look streaky. Water-based pens are cheaper than other inks. Popular brands: Staedtler Triplus, Tombow, Crayola Supertips.
- Alcohol-based pens- This ink will bleed heavily through most papers but has excellent blending capability and colour range. Crafters use these types of pens as they give seamless color, blend really well, and don’t streak. Popular brands: Spectrum Noir, Promarker, Copic, Touch, Chameleon
- Gel pens- Gel ink. Lays down thickly on the paper and has to be left to dry otherwise it may have some smearing. There are so many different types of gel ink and they are widely available. Popular brands: Uniball Signo, Sakura Gelly Roll.
- Open Stock pens- This means buying a single pen on its own, rather than in a set. If you are unsure of a type of pen, you can try a few open stock pens (especially the more expensive pen bands) before purchasing a whole set.
What are the Best Pens for Colouring?
The list below will tell you about some of the best pens for colouring. There are always variables and options, based on your paper of choice, the amount of space you are covering, and your overall preference in a pen. Take some time to test out some open stock pens and see if you really like them before you invest in an expensive set. Once you find the best pen for coloring your preferred art, you will be so happy you took the time to research the best pen.
These Pens and Markers Don’t BLEED in Your Adult Coloring Books
If you’re looking for pens that don’t bleed through the pages of your coloring books, pens for colouring will probably be your best option. Read on to find the best adult coloring markers and pens.
Water-based pens resist bleeding through but may not cover large surfaces evenly. Alcohol pens will cover larger surfaces well, but they can take a while to dry and will bleed through your paper (not ideal for double-sided coloring pages).
Brush Pitt Pens by Faber-Castell
- WHAT IS IT: Faber Castell 167147 India ink PITT artist pen B studio box of 24
- WHY USE IT: nk drawings have a very long artistic tradition. This has always been an interesting medium for artists and graphic artists, it lends drawings expression and durability and can also be combined with many other drawing techniques.
- SPECIAL FEATURES:Pigmented drawing ink High light resistance, Water-resistant, permanent Odour-free, acid-free, pH neutral 24 ink brush pens in studio box, Tip: B = brush tip, Ideal for designing cards and envelopes, Available as individual pen or in various assorted sets
- COLOURS: Ivory (103), light yellow glaze (104), cadmium yellow (107), phtalo blue (110), leaf green (112), orange glaze (113), pale geranium lake (121), middle purple pink (125), pink carmine (127), light flesh (132), magenta (133), purple violet (136), sky blue (146), light cobalt turquoise (154), cobalt green (156), dark indigo (157), light phtalo green (162), caput mortuum (169), raw umber (180), black (199) cold grey III (232), dark phtalo green (264), warm grey III (272)
- ENVIRONMENTAL AWARENESS:Polypropylene,The shafts and caps of Faber-Castell markers and fibre-tip pens are made of polypropylene (PP) to protect them from drying out quickly. Their ink will last for years. The product also has a minimal environmental impact after use, because PP burns like candle wax.
Pitt “Artist Pens” really are that – an artist pen. These are not kid’s magic markers. The colors are beautiful and this 24 count box is a fairly comprehensive set, but there are also sets containing only grays (and they are gorgeous – from warm beigy grays to cool misty ones), and sets specifically for landscape and portrait, with more specific colors.
Staedtler Markers Set of 20
- These fabulous markers are perfect for kids with their water-based food coloring ink
- They are non-toxic and actually wash out of most fabrics
- Sturdy, pressure resistant tip allows exuberant youngsters to use without the worry of ruination of the tip
- This special ink can be left uncapped for days without drying up
- The ventilated cap actually reduces the danger of choking if swallowed
This set of pens for coloring is especially great because they match the colouring pencils that are also made by Staedtler. If you draw a picture in coloured pencil and want to make it bolder you can use the coloring pens to trace over it felt tip. There is a wide variety of shades of colors that ensures that you get the right shade you are looking for.
Stabilo 88 Marker Pens
- COMFORTABLE GRIP - The famous hexagonal body shape of the STABILO point 88 makes it very comfortable to grip.
- METAL ENCLOSED TIP - The 0.4mm line width offers you a great deal of control and precision and the metal-enclosed tip provides strength and durability.
- PRECISE - For drawing you can create intricate details; for writing you can go really small with your font size. It is also perfect for use with rulers and stencils, making it ideal for precise work, structuring texts and taking notes.
- LONG CAP-OFF TIME - Thanks to the long cap-off time you won’t have to worry if you accidentally leave it off.
- SET OF 30 COLORS IN A WALLET - Start coloring now in a whopping range of 30 colors in a wallet case.
These are great for coloring in a bullet journal and the small size of the markers makes them convenient to carry I really love the size of the tips on these markers. They make it so much easier to color a straight thin line. You can blend a little with these markers. These particular markers are not meant for large areas that just need filling in. They are better used on the higher detailed areas or as the accent or blender color.
Affordable Pens for Colouring and Markers for Adult Coloring Books
You don’t have to buy huge pen collections that will break the bank. There are a number of affordable pen types that you can use for your coloring activities and still create vivid beautiful works of art.
Water-based pens are usually less expensive than other types of pens for coloring books. Alcohol pens tend to be more pricey, but you can buy pens in bulk at a lower cost per pen or you can buy them as single stock and just choose your most used colors.
Crayola Bold Line Markers
Crayola Broad Line Markers have sturdy conical tips that make them ideal for a variety of classroom and group art projects. Great for coloring in large areas, these markers also work well for drawing thin lines or dots. Broad-line markers lay down plenty of color and won’t smudge or bleed through paper.
Crayola Supertip Markers
- 105 CRAYOLA MARKERS: One 100ct pack of Crayola Super Tips Markers in assorted colors.
- THICK & THIN LINES: Supertips Markers can make thick or thin lines for a variety of coloring techniques.
- CRAYOLA COLORS: This bulk marker set features 100 different colors to make sure you always have the shade you need.
- WASHABLE MARKERS: Crayola Washable Markers are specially formulated to wash from the skin as well as most fabrics used in children's clothing.
- ART SUPPLIES FOR KIDS: Crayola Washable Markers are perfect for kids or adults to use in coloring books, make original works of art, or to practice hand lettering.
Nice colors, doesn’t bleed through (unless you really go back and forth). Great for hand lettering because you can have thick and thin lines, however, it cannot be compared to other expensive brand markers out there because the tips are not soft tips, so you need some time to master it. Not only nice for kids but also great for artists, whether you are a beginner or intermediate.
Best Markers and Pens for Drawing, Doodling, and Coloring
Markers and pens make your coloring pop with vibrant color! Pens for coloring come in a huge variety of brands and styles, so it can be hard to decide which pens are the best pens for drawing, doodling, and coloring. Read on to learn about pens that stand out as the best for your creative doodles.
Arteza Watercolor Brush Pens
Endless Creative Options: Use your Arteza Paint Brush Pens with water to create delicate watercolor effects. Or, use without water for dry-brush painting, sketching, coloring, calligraphy & more.
Caliart Marker Set
- 🎨 Alcohol Based & Permanent Markers with 81 Colors(80 colors and one colorless blender). Alcohol-based ink. Excellent smudge-proof and waterproof qualities on most surfaces. Caliart Twin Tip Permanent Markers work well on paper, ceramics, plastic etc. Great as art markers, sketch markers, permanent markers, alcohol based markers, paint markers.
- 🎨 Dual Tips & Round Pen Holder - Broad chisel (approx. 1-7mm) and fine point (approx. 0. 7mm) nibs for precise highlighting and underlining. Allowing you to write in both thin and thick lines, providing great versatility. Caliart artist markers are great for providing various styles, sketches and patterns with ease. NOTE: as they are Alcohol Based Markers like ALL other brand alcohol markers, they will Bleed through regular coloring paper, except very thick paper, marker paper.
- 🎨 COLOR-CODED CAPS & BONUS CASE: The color-coded caps allow for ease in organization and to identify colors quickly. Ergonomic design makes working with these markers easy for a long time. Equipped with a beautiful form-fitting black carrying case perfect for traveling and storing.
- 🎨 QUALITY ART MARKERS: The highly pigmented and vibrant markers are built to last without worrying about smudges, allowing you to color in at least 300 m worth of drawings and blend beautifully for added dimension to your artwork. The alcohol markers ideal for architectural design, advertising rendering, landscape, underlining, highlighting and other forms of comic design. Perfect gift idea for Christmas, Thanksgiving, school students, families, friends.
- 🎨Caliart Alcohol based markers pens: Caliart's quality alcohol markers maked the coloring world crazy and will your the soul of creation.you will love it! Feel totally free to contact us for a replacement if the original item has any defect.
These markers lay down so smoothly, and they blend like a dream once you get the hang of it. The trick really is to work quickly to blend, as they blend very nicely when still wet.
- IDEAL STARTER KIT - Ideal for aspiring amateurs, keen colorists, creative crafters, ambitious students, accomplished artists, and design professionals.
- ONE PEN BLENDS MULTIPLE TONES - Our pens feature a double-ended design, a Japanese SuperSoft brush nib and bullet nib, ideal for paper crafts, manga, graphic & fine art.
- LONG LASTING - Keep your pens top notch with our replaceable nibs and refillable inks.
- NON-TOXIC - Our alcohol-based pen is permanent on most surfaces, non-toxic, and low-odor.
- PRODUCE OVER 25 COLORS - This set of 5 vibrant color tones produce over 25 color tones giving you the ability to create stunning effects such as 3D, smooth transitions, highlighting, shading, gradations and blending, all with one pen!
This set is an excellent value. You get 52 pens but when you use each pen it gives you so many shades that you actually have the benefit of so many more colors, giving a vast palette from which to create art. The quality of the product is excellent and the added bonus of extra nibs and tweezers is something I have never seen with other alcohol pens.
- 【PREMIUM ALCOHOL-BASED MARKERS MADE IN JAPAN】A fast-drying, transparent alcohol ink will not harm the surface or fibers in the paper allowing it to remain smooth. The ink used is low-odor and non-toxic. Oval barrel designed for comfort.
- 【REPLACEABLE NIBS】SUPER BRUSH & MEDIUM BROAD: The flexible brush nib is ideal for blending, shading, and for drawing both thick and thin strokes. The broad nib is perfect for producing consistent lines and for adding details to your creations. The broad nib can be also used with the Copic ABS (Airbrush system).
- 【REFILLABLE】a separate ink refill product "Copic Ink" allows you to save money and be friendly to the environment.
- 【ACMI certifiied】all Copic markers are ACMI certified and conform to ASTM D-4236.
- This 72 pc Set B includes a well-balanced variety from every color family. All of these curated colors are perfect for general illustrations and manga.
Its pricey. We all know that. Is it worth it? Hell yeah. There is just no comparison to anything else. Copics are true to color (more natural) and they don’t bleed much, you also get a better range in colors and shades with Copic. They aren’t clunky either like Ohuhu. Costly, but definitely worth it.
Faber-Castell Pitt Pens
- PITT Artist Pens combine modern brush nib design with traditional India ink
- These artist pens are extremely fade resistant and feature waterproof pigmented acid free India ink
- The durable nib gives the freedom to create versatile ink brush strokes
- 12 color set
- Pens come in handy slide-out storage case
- The 80 double-tipped alcohol markers offer you a very wide choice of colors and are supplied with their transparent display so that you can easily find your way around!
- Colour : Multicolored
- Type : Felt-tip pens
- Product dimensions : 33,4 x 18 x 13,4 cm
These are great even as a newer artist. You will not disappointed! Some colorists feel that they will be too difficult and technical. But they are very easy to use, even for beginners. The colors are great and the tips slide super well on the paper.
Ohuhu Art Markers Dual Tips
- BRUSH & CHISEL, DOUBLE-TIP, DOUBLE THE FUN: Widen your artistic horizons with the dual-tip marker design! Choose the brush tip for sweeping, calligraphic strokes or quickly color in large areas with the wide chisel tip. The only limit is your imagination.
- EASY BLENDING, NO SMUDGING: Forget about blotchy, uneven coloring. High-quality ink blends seamlessly to achieve beautiful coloring effects, even for beginners.
- 216 VIBRANT COLORS + 1 COLORLESS BLENDER : The rainbow is at your fingertips - choose from 216 brilliant colors and bring your ideas to life. Whether it's a coloring book or a masterpiece in the making, your artwork is sure to shine with these brush markers
- ALCOHOL-BASED INK, DRIES INSTANTLY: Never let wet ink ruin your work again! Draw smudge-free thanks to its fast-drying, alcohol-based formula.
- FIND COLORS FAST: Don't waste time looking for the right color. Color-coded caps keep tips from drying out and help you find any marker in a flash. As a bonus, the free carrying case keeps your markers organized and portable for any coloring adventure! Great Gift Idea!
Ohuhu consistently holds up as the best alternative to Copics. This case has so many markers for a great price. The brush tips work amazingly well. It blends and layers perfectly. The colours are vibrant. It’s perfect.
Papermate Flair Felt Tip Pens
- Add a blast of fun to all your writing with 12 bright colors
- Medium Point felt tip (0. 7mm) produces bold, expressive lines to match your personality
- Smear- and fade-resistant, so smudges are officially history
- Water-based ink won’t bleed through paper so your writing stays put
- The point guard prevents the tip from fraying, so the party never stops
I love the colors that these Paper Mate Flair Felt Tip Pens come in. They write beautifully and the colors are very generous. I use them on my work planner, my desk planner and my budget/finances planner and I could not be happier. If you do use very thin paper it may bleed through and if you leave the pen top just a tad open it will dry out fairly quickly.
Prismacolor Art Markers
- Advanced ink formulations provide rich color saturation with smooth, silky ink flow and coverage
- Vivid, non-fading colors are consistent in hue and easily blended
- Comes in cardboard easel box
The markers have double ends which is great for finer details (although I almost wish the fine point side was slightly finer) and also great for large areas you want the same color. I would reccommend these colors to any academic or mid-level artist who is on a relatively low budget.
Reaeon Gel Pens for Coloring Books
- PROFESSIONAL QUALITY: None of toxic, acid free, lead free and all of the materials are eco-friendly. Conform to ASTM-D4236. Safe using. It's made of high end refill, which contains superior ink. The hard tip (tip size 0.8-1.0mm) makes these pens writing smoothly and using durable!
- VARIOUS COLORS: We collect all the popular colors together and make each not single to avoid the refill of being used up quickly. Glitter, Metallic, Pastel, Standard and Neon. Ready for you to choose.
- DIFFERENT USAGES: Perfect Art Ink Pen for Scrapbooking, Coloring, Journal, Nail Art, Kids, Sketching, Painting, Drawing, Writing , Tattoo & Custom Artistic Creations! Get busy with art projects or relax with an adult coloring book!
- CLASSIC PACKING:320 Pack Gel Pen Set with plastic packing. Easy to take. Could be an amazing gift for children and adults!
- Get it and Enjoy it!
The variety of colors is fantastic. The pens color very smoothly you dont have to constantly shake the pen to get the gel ink to flow. This also came with refills and they trays are numbered so you know which refill goes to each pen. An EXCELLENT value for the money for great gel pens.
Sakura Koi Assorted Coloring Brush Pen Set
- Brightly colored brush pens: Easily and quickly letter and color with the convenience of Koi brush pens
- Easy color layering: The quick drying colors make it easy to layer colors to create gradation or shadow effects
- Blendable colors: The water-based ink allows for blending with the Koi colorless blender pen or with the a few drops of water with the Koi water brushes. For best blending results, use on heavy weight smooth, uncoated paper or watercolor paper
- Flexible brush tip: These pens perform similar to a paint brush allowing fine, to bold brush strokes by changing nib pressure
- Certified non-toxic: Approved by ACMI toxicologists and bears trusted AP Seal
These are a really good value, they’re easy to blend and don’t bleed or saturate the paper easily. When using them with micron pigment liners, they don’t pick up the black ink or cause it to bleed.
Sharpie Permanent Markers
- Make your own masterpiece with the vividly bold Sharpie Ultimate Collector’s Edition
- Proudly permanent ink marks on paper, plastic, metal, and most other surfaces
- Remarkably resilient formula dries quickly and resists fading and water; AP certified
- Versatile tips: Fine point makes impressively bold marks, ultra-fine point delivers precise details and extreme control
- The ultimate collection includes: 32 fine and 29 ultra-fine point coloring markers in unforgettable original colors, 5 luminous neon markers; and 6 metallic markers with stunningly pure sheens
Are sharpie pens good for colouring? You betcha!
I bought this during a one-day sale, specifically because Sharpies can be expensive and who doesn’t want to go back to the childhood days of buying 64ct boxes of Crayola… except with the adult version, which is Sharpies. The box includes a variety of assortments, such as fine and ultra-fine tips, and also has those coveted metallic Sharpies included in the set.
Shuttle Art 120 Unique Colors Gel Pens
- 120 UNIQUE COLORS: Shuttle Art 120 Unique Gel Pen Set contains 120 INDIVIDULE colors. Enjoy the fun of coloring! Each pen enjoys a unique color, which brings much more fun for Adult book Coloring, Scrap booking, Sketching, Doodling, Drawing, Writing, and all the other art designs.
- 7 COLOR TYPES: It includes 7 color types. Abundant colors with so many vibrant inks, you cannot imagine! We have glitter, neon glitter, metallic, neon, pastel, swirl, standard.
- CUTE PACKING: It’s convenient and easy taking. What’s more, it does NOT need big space to lay when you use.
- VALUE PACK WITH SUPERIOR QUALITY: Long lasting, durable tips, smooth writing, non-toxic, acid free. Conforms to ASTM-D4236.
- SERVICE GUARANTEE: Your satisfaction is our top priority, please rest assured to purchase our products. If you are not satisfied with our products or have any questions, please feel free to contact us at any time.
Incredibly easy to use on paper.. the ballpoint is so smooth and not scratchy. The choice of colours is incredible.
Soucolor Dual Tip Brush Markers Pens
- 34 Variety of colors with no duplicates, water-based, vibrant ink. rich and vivid colors arouse your artistic creativity.
- Dual Tip Pens are designed with 0.4mm fine tip and 1-2mm brush tip. 0.4mm fine tip is great for drawing lines & details, works well for intricate coloring books, writing, doodles; 1-2mm brush tip works well for coloring books, signing, design, art project and hand lettering.
- Great Gift for adults, teacher, college students, beginners and For using in school, travel or used in the home and office. Perfects for adult coloring books, sketch, illustrations, drawing, planner, journal, notebook, calendar, signing, manga, animation, graphic, design, art project and more!
- Vibrant no bleed watercolor Markers which are also no leak, So we bring odorless water-based ink with our brush calligraphy pens, it will gives consistent lines for detail fine art and brush lettering.
The pens write smoothly with vibrant colors and the ultra fine-tip pens are a great feature.
These would be perfect for journaling or art projects. Even with a very cheap brand of copy paper, neither side of the pen bleeds through.
Markers are terrific! Beautiful, rich colors. A must for colorists and crafters.
Steadtler Triplus Fineliner
- Assembly Required: No, Ink Color: Assorted, Tip: 0.3mm Fine , Tip Size: 0.3mm
- Features: Acid-free Ink
- Sold as 1 pack
There is some bleed through on thin papers, such as the sheets in that particular journal. The pens are shaped with three angles; as someone with joint problems, this extremely helpful in minimizing pain when writing. This function also helps the pens click back into the container. The container’s lid has a pop-back function that lets you stand the entire case upright, for easy organization while you write. They are made very well.
Tombow Dual Brush Pens
- Water-based pens ideal for coloring, fine art, illustrations, doodling, journaling, hand lettering and more!
- Includes 96 colors, including a colorless blender, and a desk stand
- Flexible brush tip and fine tip in one marker! Brush tip works like a paintbrush to create fine, medium or bold strokes; fine tip gives consistent lines
- Included colorless blender pen softens and blends colors, creating a watercolor effect
- Tips self-clean after blending. Acid-Free, Odorless.
They are great for what I use them for, which is just coloring and drawing. The range of colors is fantastic, and they seem to be lasting pretty well (I’ve had them for about 6-1/2 months). I would deduct 1/2 star for the quality of the nylon tips…some of my markers that I use the most frequently have gotten to be very fuzzy at the end, which is most disappointing.
What to Look for When Buying Markers for Adult Coloring Books
Here’s what you should look for when searching for the best pens and markers to color with.
Pens may be water-based, alcohol, gel, or hybrid inks. Some pen types work better with certain paper types than others. Make sure to test different pens before using them on a project (especially if the ink is light) as some pens will smudge.
So, what types of pens are considered the best pens for coloring books? In general, gel and alcohol-based pens work well with very fine details and smooth coverage on your page. You can also blend colors from one color family to another with these pen types.
Water-based pens and markers lay down well and can be used on both sides of a page, but you might find that they don’t blend as well. They may also have a tendency to make your paper pull up or pill when the paper gets oversaturated.
These types of pens are water-soluble, so they’re great for coloring books with double-sided pages (just remember to test the pen first). Water-based pens don’t contain hazardous materials like alcohol or shellac.
Alcohol-based pens cover larger areas well and blend easily. They will dry quickly, they blend beautifully, and they are great for creating shading. If you want the best art pens for coloring books, alcohol-based is your go-to.
The only drawback to alcohol-based coloring is that it will bleed into the paper. This is what enables the inks to blend so well. But it makes it so you will not be able to color on pages that are printed double-sided without ruining one side.
Almost all gel pens are water-resistant once they have dried on the page–a great choice for double-sided coloring pages! Gel pens lay down opaque color on most types of paper, including non-porous materials like glossy pictures/photos/paintings that don’t absorb ink well. However, some colorists find that gel pen ink can be slow to dry on certain papers or on top of certain inks (for example, on glossy black paper).
Gel pens come in a wide variety of tip widths. If you want to get the best pen for coloring books, look for thicker-tipped gel pens over .3mm or .5mm–too thin and they can tear through some types of paper. Gel pens are some of the best drawing pens for adults because they lay down smooth color with little to no drag while writing on most types of paper.
Hybrid ink is made up of pigments suspended in water or oil–this type of pen lays down color very smoothly and can cover large spaces without bleeding through your pages. You will need fixative if you’re using Hybrid inks for your coloring books.
Sharpie(R) Permanent Markers:
That’s right–our beloved Sharpie is one of the best pens for drawing and coloring. They’re available in a wide variety of tip sizes, they don’t bleed through paper, they blend together very well, and they dry quickly without smearing. Just make sure you get an alcohol-based permanent marker rather than their water-based ones!
Other Important Factors to Consider when buying coloring pens
Price: Pens for coloring books can cost anywhere from $1/pack to more than $30/pack. Typically, pens designed specifically for art tend to be pricier (quality matters).
Permanence: Pens with erasable ink are also on the market. Sometimes after you’ve finished your project, you may want to go back and make corrections. These pens allow you to do exactly that!
Packaging: Consider packaging when buying markers for your adult coloring books–you don’t want to accidentally buy something that will dry out before you have a chance to use it all up! Pen sets are great because they aren’t exposed to air as much, so they tend to last longer.
Ease of use: Rather than trying out every pen on the market, look for the best pen for adult coloring books that matches your needs. Different materials will work better with different pens–that’s normal! Just pick the one that yields the results you’re looking for in terms of color quality and ease of application when using it on your coloring book pages.
Your likes and dislikes: Finally, consider your preferences when shopping for a marker or pen to use with your next adult coloring book project. For instance, if you have a specific color family that you prefer not to mix yourself (like reds or blues), buy a set that has those colors so you’ll be prepared for any coloring book page that comes your way. You can also consider how easy the pens are to hold and apply pressure with.
Type of paper: The best pens for adult coloring books will behave differently on different types of paper. Consider the absorbency factor of the type of paper you’re buying when buying coloring pens. If you like to color on thinner paper or print on both sides of your pages, you won’t want to use an alcohol-based pen or marker.
Paper weight: If you like heavier paper like card stock or watercolor, make sure that the marker or pen you choose doesn’t bleed through (some do). Some pens and markers, such as alcohol-based Sharpies, are more likely to bleed through the paper because they’re specifically made to lay down thick lines–so keep that in mind when shopping. If you like working on midweight papers (like printer or sketching paper), wide-tipped pens can be easier to work with.
Coloring book size: Consider the size of your coloring book pages when looking for pens and markers. Wide-tipped pens can be better than thin ones for covering bigger spaces–especially if you don’t want to spend a lot of time refilling/reloading your pen with ink during your color session!
Time constraints: How much time do you have to color? Pens that dry quickly are especially useful if you have time constraints on your coloring projects. Alcohol-based pens tend to be the fastest drying. Gel pens take a long time to dry and you won’t be able to work on your coloring if there is a large section that you might drag your hand through.
Resolution/detail needed: If you want the best pen for adult coloring books, consider how much detail you need on each page. Gel pens are great for drawing fine details, but only alcohol-based markers will lay down thick lines perfect for filling in large areas of color. Think about what types of images patterns you’ll want to color in your pages when choosing pens.
I used to buy inexpensive markers for kids, assuming it wouldn’t make a difference. But when I did use the finest adult coloring book markers, I was surprised at how much better the results were.